Joanna Swann's plate is very full and there isn't much room on it for fun. With three children to raise on her own, an ex-husband about to marry his young pregnant girlfriend and a household in need of constant attention, the last thing she needs is Dale McConnaughy playing with her heart strings.

The handsome former baseball player is attracted to Joanna the moment he sees her, but forever is not in his dictionary. Joanna's best friend tries convincing her she needs a "gap" guy, but can a highly responsible woman allow herself a fling? As they become entwined in each other's lives, Joanna has a hard time seeing the end of the relationship, while transient Dale's fear of sticking around grows.

Templeton is a masterful storyteller, delivering richly developed characters you care about and adding in the right amount of spice. (Oct., 400 pp., $6.50)

Reviewed by: 
Debbie Richardson